Articles about Azure

Microsoft Azure IoT hub is now available -- here's what you need to know

Internet of things

Microsoft has released the latest component of its cloud IoT suite, the Azure IoT hub, which was first announced back in September.

Azure IoT Hub is designed to make it easy to connect IoT devices to the cloud as well as allowing bidirectional communication, with device to cloud telemetry and cloud to device commands.

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Ubuntu Linux and open source play key role in Microsoft Azure Stack Technical Preview


The current perceptions of Microsoft by some home users can be quite negative. This is likely due to privacy concerns with Windows 10, which is a legitimate issue. With that said, the company is still the darling of the enterprise. After all, Windows 7 and Office are integral tools for many successful businesses.

Windows and Office aside, another wildly popular business tool from Microsoft is Azure. This cloud platform is great, but some companies wisely prefer an on-premises solution. Enter Azure Stack. Today, Microsoft announces that the first Technical Preview of its hybrid cloud/datacenter product is coming this week. Bigger news, arguably, is that Canonical's operating system, Ubuntu Linux, will play a key role. Once again, Microsoft is leveraging open source -- noticing a trend here, folks?

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Microsoft Azure now lets you backup VMware instances


Microsoft has launched an enhanced version of its Azure Site Recovery (ASR) targeted especially for VMware customers.

The ASR concept allows you to backup virtual machines into the Azure storage, update them and then run the VMs in Azure as a disaster recovery option. Microsoft charges $54 a month per VM instance stored in Azure, but doesn’t pay any compute or storage costs until you run the VM, which would make sense as it is only a file until the VM is spun up.

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Here are the system requirements for Microsoft Azure Stack

Nope, Microsoft isn't getting into Android with a Cyanogen investment

Microsoft has announced the hardware requirements needed to run its Azure Stack – the upcoming on-premise hybrid version of the Azure cloud.

The Azure Stack first gets installed on a server and delivers Azure services in a customer’s datacentre, enabling developers and IT professionals to build, deploy and operate cloud applications using consistent tools, processes and artifacts.

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The enterprise trends of 2015


Businesses tend to be quite conservative in their approach to technology, so it's always interesting to look at what's been sparking their interest.

Identity and mobility management specialist Okta has released a new report, based on analysis of its customers, looking at the big winners and losers in the enterprise over the past year.

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Microsoft has a bright future, says Goldman Sachs

Future Man Looking

Goldman Sachs thinks Microsoft is making a comeback. The investment banking firm has produced a 22-page document -- titled Righting a Wrong -- looking at Microsoft’s current business, the recent changes it has made and it’s future opportunities.

The research analyzes Microsoft’s core businesses of Azure, Windows and Office and believes that the future looks bright for the company, going as far as to change its stock rating from Sell to Neutral.

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Microsoft partners with The Linux Foundation for 'Linux on Azure' certification


Linux is not only the future, but the present too. Even if you do not directly use an operating system based on the kernel, there is a good chance that it impacts you every day. Much of your precious internet traffic is routed through servers that run Linux. Many set-top boxes and devices are powered by the kernel and you may not even know it. Of course, Android is one such Linux-based operating system that millions upon millions of people use daily.

With that said, careers in Linux could be ready to explode. Believe it or not, 97 percent of surveyed hiring managers are looking to add Linux professionals, according to the 2015 Linux Jobs Report. Seriously, if you or someone you know has an interest in computers, yet don't know which direction to take in school or career, it is something to explore. While it may not be a good fit for everyone, it is worth your attention -- even Microsoft is hiring Linux professionals nowadays. In fact, today, that company announces a partnership with the The Linux Foundation for a special, Microsoft-issued, Linux on Azure certification.

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Microsoft brings Debian Linux to Azure

penguin megaphone

While many Linux users are vocal Microsoft detractors, the truth is, the company is a proponent of the kernel. Yes, in years past, the Windows-maker seemingly looked at Linux with disdain, but times are changing, folks. The company is hiring open source professionals, and even developing apps for the world's most popular Linux distro, Android. Not to mention, Azure has long supported a handful of Linux distributions.

Today, Microsoft is once again embracing Linux by announcing Debian support for Azure. Yes, one of the world's most popular distros is coming to the Azure Marketplace. It is joining other operating systems based on the kernel, such as Ubuntu, RHEL, openSUSE and more.

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Microsoft to hide European data from the NSA with new German datacenters


The arms of the NSA may be long, but there are some parts of the world in which it holds no sway. Conscious of European concerns about US government web surveillance, Microsoft today announces German datacenter options for Azure, Office 365 and Dynamics CRM Online.

Starting in the second half of 2016, customers in Europe will be able to opt to have their data stored in Germany. The datacenters will be controlled by German data trustee, Deutsche Telekom who will oversee all access to customer data. With Microsoft’s "mobile first, cloud-first" philosophy, this is a move to try to rebuild trust in cloud services which the company clearly feels has been lost.

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Microsoft to offer cloud services from the UK

Cloud access

At the Future Decoded event, which kicked off today at London’s ExCel Center, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella took to the stage to talk about his firm’s mobile first, cloud first strategy.

During his speech he announced that Microsoft plans to offer commercial cloud services from the UK. Azure and Office 365 will be available from local data centers in late 2016, followed by Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online shortly afterwards.

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Druva extends its protection to Azure

Cloud Security Lock

The increasing demands of compliance and legal requirements are forcing companies to retain more and more data as well as having to comply with local regulations. Many organizations see the public cloud as an attractive option for storing this information but that in itself raises additional security issues.

For Azure users the headaches are about to be reduced as data protection specialist Druva is extending its cloud solutions to Microsoft's public cloud and infrastructure platform.

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Lumia sales are in the toilet, Surface revenue is down

Surface Pro 3 Windows 10

Microsoft has just released its Q1 FY2016 (Q3 CY2015) earnings report, posting revenue of $20.4 billion, operating income of $5.8 billion, net income of $4.6 billion and earnings per share of $0.57 (all GAAP figures). The software giant's numbers beat analysts' expectations, which has added around 10 percent to its stock price in after-hours trading. Here are the highlights of the software giant's quarter.

Microsoft has divided its earnings in three categories, namely Productivity and Business Processes, Intelligent Cloud, and More Personal Computing. The good news comes from Intelligent Cloud, where revenue is up by eight percent, while the bad news is in More Personal Computing, where the poor performance of Lumia and Surface devices lead to a 17 percent decrease in revenue, year-over-year.

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Zoomdata unifies analytics for cloud and on-premise data

Cloud storage

Businesses are increasingly dealing with a mix of data, both real time and historical, and stored locally and in the cloud. This can mean that they end up having to use a mix of analytic tools.

Visual analytics specialist Zoomdata is announcing its AnyCloud initiative, which enables enterprises to visually interact with all data in the enterprise, whether on-premise or in the cloud.

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Microsoft introduces Azure Data Catalog and Power BI Desktop

Cloud storage

This week is a big one for Microsoft and its Azure cloud platform, with major updates coming through before its Worldwide Partner Conference. The updates introduce a raft of juicy new features, including Azure Data Catalog and Power BI Desktop.

Azure Data Catalog is actually available in public preview today, and Microsoft describes it as an enterprise metadata portal for the self-discovery of data sources.

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Online disruption after internet backbone cables are cut in CA


Vandals have struck in California's Bay Area leading to a disruption to web traffic. The FBI is investigating the incident which occurred when several fiber optic cables were severed in Livermore, around 50 miles east of San Francisco.

The attack took place at about 4.30 am PT Tuesday, and caused problems for ISPs as well as Microsoft Azure. Backbone providers were hit hard, and web users over a wide area suffered from reduced performance. This is far from being the first attack on internet cables in the area, and the FBI is seeking help from anyone with information that could bring the perpetrators to justice.

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